Did you ever feel God nudging you to do something, to take on a new project or service? It’s not always a comfortable feeling. After Hurricane Katrina came through the Mississippi gulf coast, He nudged me to take action. I happened to live in Biloxi and went to a church that played an integral part in the rebuilding process. Our Pastor’s wife, Judy Bultman, was the Director for our volunteer ministry. She was/is an amazing woman. God anointed her and she became a leader with a gift of inspiring others. She loved the ministry. Then her husband retired and they moved to Georgia, where they were originally from. That left a gaping hole in the ministry.
The Director position needed to be filled for the ministry to continue. More homes needed to be rebuilt and we were the “food and shelter” for the volunteers that came from all over the U.S. to rebuild homes. Judy came to me one day and asked if I would take over. I have never felt smaller and so inadequate to fill a job. Just like Saul who said, “Me? Am I not from the smallest tribe in Israel? Is not my clan the least of these?” 1 Samuel 9:21 I gave every excuse I could think of as to why I was the worst person for the job. But I still felt God nudging me to take this on. Instead of asking the Lord what gifts have you given me to do the job right, I was asking Him to let me out of it. I took the job without a joyful heart. But God has a way of changing our hearts to His Glory and revealing our gifts to serve Him.
This job was a 24 hour kind of job. We had volunteers at our church day and night. I had a family with 2 small children. My kids spent a lot of time at the church with me. I was on call 24/7. It was difficult juggling work and family, more so with a 24 hour job. And I was not a good time manager. I had to learn to delegate and let go of a few things.
While Judy was the Director, she had started a tradition of prayer time every morning after breakfast and before the volunteers went out to work on houses. This became the highlight of my day. At first I was very nervous about praying in front of others, but it was expected of me because I was the leader. As the days passed, I began to relax and not worry about what others thought and focused on praising our amazing Creator, our Lord and Savior.
I learned many things during this time. It was a true to life, “Come to Jesus” moment in time. Some leaders are born, some are made and some are thrown into the battle to sink or swim. Let’s just say, some days I sank, some days I swam, and still other days I swam with the sharks. I was NOT a Judy Bultman. But, I was an obedient, joyful servant of God. And He used me to serve others, just as I had been praying for many years.
Everyone has gifts they can use to serve God. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. But how often do we put ourselves in a position to build our strengths and weaknesses? Our spiritual strengths need to be built, just like our muscles. We need to “workout” every day in order to be strong spiritually and mentally. God knew I needed to stretch and grow spiritually. That is why He put me in a position that I was not quite ready for. I wouldn’t have done it on my own. He nudged me into stretching and working out my strengths.
When you feel uncomfortable doing something new, that just means you are stretching. Your mind and spirit need to be stretched in order to grow. So, if you are ready to grow and don't mind being a little uncomfortable, try something new. What can you do to work out every day? Here are a couple of things that have worked for me:
1 . Study the Bible. It is full of strengths and weaknesses we can learn from. The characters from the Bible were not fictional characters or folk tales. They were real people, with real feelings, with real issues to deal with. We can learn from their mistakes and their successes.
2 . Take a Spiritual Gifts inventory. Find out what your gifts are and ask God where you can use your gifts to glorify Him.
3. Stretch your mind by taking the Mental Fitness Challenge(MFC). The MFC is sweeping the nation, challenging people to "Live the Life You've Always Wanted." I am taking the MFC right now…stretching my mind. You can take the 7 Day Free Challenge and find out what your strengths and weaknesses are with the free assessment. Follow this link: http://www.mental-fitness-challenge.com/Home.aspx?ln=61238411
4. Pray for God to stretch you and guide you along the way. Then glorify Him when you begin to change and grow!
Blessings! Glory to God for all our good things!